Tuesday, April 30, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

It's like Gap Yah gone good. Proenza Schouler designers Jack MCollough and Lazaro Hernandez have designed an exclusive mini collection for Net-a-Porter as a "thank you" for being one of the first e-tailers to stock their gorgeous label. "It's a riff on the idea of surf-inspired classics like the board short and the Baja pullover, but reinterpreted in luxe fabrics like leather and custom tweeds" said the boys. You will recognise the components- slouchy board shorts, loud prints and woven hoodies- as the classic garb of everyone who takes themselves off to Mexico/ Peru/ Argentina etc. for travelling antics. Usually, they're the kind of thing you wear to death when you're away then cast off the moment you're back because they suddenly seem quite out of place in grey old Blighty. Obviously, with the Proenza magic touch there is no way you'd slob about by a beach bonfire in this stuff, or discard it in any climate. In fact, the monochrome suede board shorts have proved so popular that they've already sold out. As it's pay day but still a while until holiday time, what could be more perfect than pulling on a tie-dye skirt and tee and taking yourself on a Proenza Schouler fashion getaway? Well, that's my fashion fantasy of the day.

Tweed hoodie £1,075

T-shirt £185

Board shorts £1,030

Jacket £975

Skirt £525

Monday, April 29, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Fashion is about fitting in. It's about the things to do or have which means we can join a certain kind of club, or make people think of us in a certain way. If we get really pedantic about it then that's why people who aren't interested in clothes understand fashion because there is just as much "fashion" in baby buggies or motorbikes as there is in skirts, shoes and hairstyles. Recently, the frame of time between amazingly cool and fabulous and saturation point has become so miniscule that I've begun to wonder (in a very miserly way of course) if it's ever even worth buying anything "cool"?

Take, for instance, a Kenzo sweatshirt. I totally love what Humberto Leon and Carol Lim have done at Kenzo. The game-changing part of their philosophy (imported from their time at Opening Ceremony) has been to offer a slice of the designer action to fashion-mad teen/ twenty-somethings who will probably never afford a £900 jacket. An £85 t-shirt or £165 sweatshirt is much more within reach. Thus, there's been an absolute run on them. If you've got a Kenzo sweatshirt and were going to this weekend's Vogue Festival, then of course you were going to take the opportunity to wear it because it's possibly the most fashion thing you own. Casting Agent Rosie Vogel saw so many that she felt inclined to post the following tweet...

If I see another Kenzo sweatshirt I'm fairly certain I will spontaneously combust

Kenzo sweatshirt (thetonnish.blogspot.com)
When I see girls (and boys) walking down the street in Kenzo sweatshirts, I admire them. I think that they must have been really dedicated to the cause to score that item because they are so hard to come by. I also see it as a kind of code. When I see their jumper, I know they share one of my biggest interests and that we could have a good conversation about whether we want a Brian Lichtenberg Homies jumper or Bucci one. But if I saw said boy/girl on the cobbles of Somerset House during fashion week, my opinion would, I'm ashamed to say, be a bit different. It'd be a wry, raised eyebrow. A knowing thought that said person was probably after a spot on a style blog. 

Then I recall the time I wore a Jonathan Saunders skirt to a family member's 80th birthday. "Oh, there's lovely" said an elderly relative, "they had something that colour in Marks the other day". At that moment, I wanted to be transported somewhere where my purchase would be truly appreciated for what it was. Where everyone would know. So perhaps it's a question of balance? Or should we just buy for love then not care?

Friday, April 26, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

The sun might not be shining any more but, hey, it's nearly the weekend. We can't have it all.  Before you sign off for the week, here's all your need-to-know fashion news.

As we reported earlier in the week, John Galliano is set to teach a three-day creative master class at Parsons. However, someone is clearly not happy with the decision to offer temporary employment to the designer who was sacked from Dior after he was recorded making anti-semitic comments. At the time of writing, there were 396 signatures on a Change.org petition which cites that "it is disgraceful to hire someone who has made such inhumane comments". Galliano has also been working with Central Saint Martin's students, setting a project for them which he then returned to comment on. FEAL is of the opinion that everyone deserves a second chance.

Lacroix couture 2008 (fashionmagazine.com)
Christian Lacriox has been talking to Dazed Digital about his new venture, designing a couture collection for the newly revived House of Schiaparelli which we'll get to see in July. Lacroix hints that the 15-piece collection will be an in-depth, modern reinterpretation of "Sciap's" oeuvre rather than a bunch of shocking pink gowns. He said, "Her heritage is much too often reduced and simplified with the surrealistic and caricatural side of her clothes. But she made practical and modern clothes that have inspired many couturiers." For fashion geeks, the very fact Lacroix is designing anything at all is very exciting; his last couture collection was shown in 2009.

A Schiaparelli sketch (fmvmag.com)
This week's latest Saint Laurent news is that... it's selling well. WWD reports this morning that sales have climbed 16.9% this year, the best sales results among all the luxury labels in the Kering group. There was particular emphasis on "significant growth" in menswear as well as "higher sales of iconic handbags and a promising start for new shoe styles". Lena Dunham also wore Saint Laurent this week when she went to the Time 100 event.

Lena Dunham, in Saint Laurent, with Claire Danes (vogue.co.uk)
Another brand whose sales are storming is Prada, whose net profits increased by 46% in 2012. Today, Business of Fashion analyses how Prada is doing so much better than many of its competitors. The simple answer? Carefully measured expansion, great product and solid commercial strategy.

Are you a member of a book group? Maybe you're a college/university lecturer? Would you like some free fashion books to read and discuss? Novelist Linda Grant is offering to send you a bunch of copies of her book The Thoughtful Dresser. All you need to do pay is postage. Email Linda at Linda@lindagrant.co.uk if you're interested. To find out more, read Alice Rawsthorn's review.

It's less than two weeks until the Met Gala and for us mere mortals who won't be dining between Beyonce and Kim Kardashian there's a chance yet to get in on the action. For the second time, the event will be livestreamed but this time it's going to be better. We're promised a much improved quality of feed with Hilary Rhodha and William Norwich as hosts plus interviews with Riccardo Tisci and Anna Wintour, amongst others. While we wait, why not watch US Vogue's punk collections video, starring Cara D?

Victoria Beckham might be trying to get a Vogue cover, according to The Daily Star. We enjoyed the final sentence of their quote from "insiders" which goes like this; "Editor Anna Wintour enjoys making people work for it". Quite what Wintour might be making Victoria do to earn a Vogue cover is a game which could occupy us for quite some time.

Finally, Gucci's Frida Giannini has recently had a baby but James Franco spent 18 months filming her day-to-day life for his new film The Director, a documentary about Giannini's work at Gucci. The film is out later this year. Happy Weekend!

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Yesterday, we came across Buzzfeed's "The 21 Types of Hipster You Encounter in London" post. We laughed and nodded, knowlingly. But then Melanie pointed out that there wasn't much girl representation among Buzzfeed's choice of hipsters. And obviously, girl hipsters have their own particular style traits which deserve a listicle of their very own. So, in the interest of balance we bring you 8 ways to know that a girl is a hipster...

1. She tilts her head in whimsical directions when she's taking a selfie/ having her picture taken. She probably never looks directly at the camera.

via chictopia.com
2. She regularly wears t-shirts and items of jewellery with moustaches on.

via www.culture-vulture.co.uk
3. She wears denim cut-off shorts all year round... even in the snow

via blog.denimtherapy.com

4. Her hair is permanently dip dyed and/or the colour of a My Little Pony

vi weheartit.com

5. She owns two kind of hats. Beanies...

via styledeityathens.com

And Bowlers...

via tumblr.stiiicky.com
6. She wears her socks pulled right up her calves

via fuckafakefri3nd.tumblr.com
7. She has pointy, multicoloured nails

via ohmeohmyohme.blogspot.com
8. And, when she's not wearing her denim cut-offs it's American Apparel disco pants. Once again, even in the snow. Dedicated or what?

via lookbook.nu

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

All savvy public figures know that airport is akin to catwalk. If you have a new book, film or even career reinvention to promote then nailing a great plane-to-taxi look will give you those essential, yet seemingly effortless, column inches and a huge online buzz. John Galliano flew into LA at the weekend just as the news was emerging that he is to teach a new class at Parsons, New York's School of Design. To the untrained eye, Galliano's look is "eccentric" and "bohemian-style" (yes, Daily Fail you guessed it). However, a careful second glance shows that the outfit is comprised of key pieces which show that Mr G is completely up-to-speed with fashion right now. Don't believe me? Let me show you...

John Galliano arrives at LAX in wht is actually a very
fashion-now look (image via dailymail.co.uk)


Galliano's choice of man-skirt print is bang on the fashion money right now. Christopher Kane and Michael Kors were among the numerous designers who did it for Autumn. The silky material is also a high-fashion touch, taking it from army surplus to statement piece.


One of Galliano's several layering pieces is a lace blouse with what appears to be a slightly flared sleeve. The layering is key because that build-up of flimsy tops (rather than one hefty jumper) was a key styling trick on the recent AW13 catwalks. The blouse has something of the pyjama about it and you only have to look at what Marc Jacobs did at both his own label and Louis Vuitton to see that luxurious, come-to-bed silky/ lacy/ furry textures are in favour for the coming fashion season.


This is where Galliano's nod to street style comes in. A classic way the most photographed girls liven up their look is by wearing socks underneath their killer Kirkwood sandals. Ok, so Galliano's footwear is more Jesus that Kirkwood but it's the same premise. Notice how one sock is pulled up, while the other is artfully rolled down. See The Sartorialist's recent post for further evidence.


It's difficult to tell exactly what Galliano's base layer tee spells out but I'd have a stab at "Varsity". Whatever the real word, he clearly knows that everyone from Topshop to Rodarte has jumped on the slogan wagon of late and thus, so has he. It may be reading a little too much into it, but isn't it cleverly subversive that we know he's wearing one, yet we cannot read what it says?


Any pink, from piglet to pepto-bismol, is a big thing for Autumn. Galliano demonstrates that he is completely aware of this with his choice of sunglasses, thus getting in on the trend way before the rest of us have got round to it.

Friday, April 19, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

It's back. Your weekly round-up of everything you need to know about fashion this week. Enjoy!

Prada have launched writing competition in conjunction with Feltrinelli Editore. To enter, they would like submissions at least ten pages long, written in Bodoni font on the subject:

"What are the realities that our eyes give back to us? And how are these realities filtered through lenses?"

Cleverly, this is also Prada's way of promoting their range of prescription glasses. Find out more here. 

After last week's news that Nicola Formichetti would be leaving Mugler, a surprise turn of events. Today it was announced that Thierry Mugler himself will return to overseeing shows and the design division of his label. Under his creative direction, new teams will reportedly be hired to freshen up both ready-to-wear and fragrance. No more Gaga then. The move follows Jil Sander's return to her eponymous label last year.

Demi Moore wearing Thierry Mugler in Indecent Proposal (image via onthisdayinfashion.com)

In Hedi Slimane's latest Saint Laurent trick, he has dressed up Daft Punk in sequinned jackets. it's all part of his ongoing music project in which he's worked with his favourite musician to emphasise the link between music and fashion. If you're interested in the impact of the Hedi/ Saint Laurent thing, then you should definitely read Eric Wilson's great NY Times piece which marks the first year of Hedi's tenure. Still no interview though.

Daft Punk in Saint Laurent (via timvogue.com)
It turns out that Margaret Thatcher's won't just be remembered as a lover her/ hate her politician and Britain's first female prime minister. Nope, she's also leaving a pretty strong fashion legacy. You could say that "Thatcherism" is just as much about pearls as it is about privatisation. If you need examples, here are 2. Number 1, Samantha Cameron paid her own special kind of tribute to Baroness Thatcher by wearing a pussy bow blouse to her funeral on Wednesday. Number 2, sales of Thatcher's favourite Launer handbags have seen a 53% rise in sales since her death.

Samantha Cameron in a Thatcher blouse (image via telegraph.co.uk)
Great Gatsby domination is gathering pace now that we definitely know the film is coming out quite soon. Carey Mulligan is on the cover of the latest issue of US Vogue in full flapper get-up. Grace Coddington, who doesn't usually work on covers or with celebrities, was responsible for styling Mulligan in an Oscar de la Renta gown. It is quite otherworldly. Opinions are divided online with many expressing disappointment that Mulligan isn't wearing Prada, who have worked on the film's costumes. I'm quite into it. In other Great Gatsby news, Harrods is opening a pop-up jazz bar from May 9th-20th so we can go and experience what it's like to be a bright young thing.

Carey Mulligan covers US Vogue (image via fashionologie.com)
You not have heard of Stephen Fried, but you will have heard of the word he's sorry for inventing- "fashionista". This week, Fried apologised for coining the term in his 1993 biography of Gia Carangi. Apparently, he "unleashed upon an unsuspecting public a single word of terrifying power and controversy." Poor fashionistas.

We love Man Repeller. If you do too, you should pre-order her book. Not out until September, but something to look forward to. Plus the cover is dungaree-spiration.

Leandra Medine a.k.a Man Repeller's new book (image via manrepeller.com)
In case you haven't seen it yet, here's the Dove ad which has gone viral this week. And if you want a to read a good thing to make you think about in lots of different ways, then read this from The Cut.

Thursday, April 18, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Oh, as I write it has just begun to absolutely bucket down with rain and hail just outside our office window. The sky has turned an angry, bleak shade of grey and there's a chill in the air. So, out goes the "now it's getting a bit Spring-like, this is the collab for you" angle I was going for. Thankfully, there are plenty of other reasons to get excited about Comptoir des Cotonniers' collection with Calla.

Calla AW13 (via style.com)

For the uninitiated, Calla is the fashion label designed by Calla Haynes, a Paris-based, Toronto born designer who shows at Milk Studios during New York Fashion Week. Her clothes are sweet, young and exactly the kind of thing I (and probably you) go mad for; pretty sweatshirts, printed trousers and fun skirt suits. Just easy and lovely, but you also wouldn't be surprised to see someone wearing them on Streetpeeper (I just checked, it hasn't happened yet, but it's only a matter of time, surely?). Anyway, lots of people like to use the two significant cities of Haynes's life to explain her clothes. Style.com said they are "friendly" just like everyone in Toronto but "with a whiff of couture in the materials and construction" which is where Paris, obviously, comes in.

Calla Haynes
Paris fashion isn't just about couture these days though; it also encapsulates that fabulously thrown-together, brilliantly basic and chic look which the French Vogue team encapsulate as they strut around fashion weeks with rumpled hair, smudged eyeliner and minimal accessories or fuss. And this is where Comptoir comes in because you can basically buy that whole look from them- apart from the nonchalant glamour bit which I've heard requires specific gallic genes.

Vest £55, skirt £85

Shirt dress, £85
The collaboration with Calla brings a softer, more girlish element to Comptoir's usual offering. There are all those throw-on things which are the cornerstones of French easy chic like a loose-tee, sweeping maxi skirt and skinny jeans but made carefree with Hayne's smudgy hydrangea prints. My own favourite thing is the shirt dress which is like a grown-up version of those lovely checked and striped dresses we used to wear as Summer uniform at Junior School. I think it is an especially sweet/ clever touch (or coincidence) that the model in these shots has exactly the same choppy fringe and beach waves as Calla Haynes herself. Selling the whole package. And just like that, the sun is out again and wearing that shirt dress is a distinct possibility. Yay.

Calla x Comptoir des Cotonniers will be available from 24th April in stores and on-line here

T-shirt £75, jeans £110. Skateboard sadly not included.

Dress £185

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Press day season is in full swing which means we get to see everything which we'll be able to buy for Autumn a good few months in advance. It's also one of the best places to discover the brands which PRs and retailers are taking a punt on. Today, Melanie and I pootled along to My Wardrobe and Relative. Here's what we loved:


Your search for the ultimate keep-forever, best of british winter coat is done. My Wardrobe have hooked up with Harris tweed to make this lovely velvet-collared coat which will be just £350. Clever fashion.


One of the most fabulous manifestations of the fluff trend we've seen so far is this baby blue coat by former Chloe designer Isa Arfen. Our favourite thing about it? It's made from the same material as Steiff  teddy bears, in the words of Isa's PR "it's a big hug of a coat".


Was there ever a more stylish way to carry your Mac?


Elena's a designer at Givenchy but has somehow found the time to start her own label on the side. The sharp and roomy handbags are new and exclusive to My Wardrobe for Autumn/ Winter.


Oh, to be a Basso and Brooke boy with a shirt which matches your bike which matches your skateboard which matches your leather tote.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

As I wrote a few weeks ago, women really love menswear right now. Specifically, menswear which feels simple, long-lasting and beauifully made. In fact, when one girl I met the other day was asked "What would you buy if you had £1,000 to spend on whatever you want", she replied, unhesitant, "A load of Cos menswear". While the idea of a crisp white shirt, perfectly pleated trousers and a pleasingly heavy overcoat is appealing, the reality is that men do not have breasts and bottoms and they mostly prefer their clothes to be quite loose fitting. What we want is that crisp shirt, but with appropriate darts so we're not drowning/ busting out in it. If you totally relate to that kind of boy/girl fashion balance, then you need to know about these three menswear labels now doing womenswear which exhibited at Paris and London fashion weeks.


1205 AW13 (via vogue.co.uk)
"It's called 1205 because I like the purity of four numbers" Paula Gerbase told me when I met her at her NEWGEN debut at LFW back in February. That introduction sets the scene nicely for Paula's collection of precise and simple blazers, sweaters, shirts and trousers. There are details though, like shots of red on right-hand cuffs, which trip up any kind of straightforward minimalism. Paula has great credentials having worked at Savile Row tailors Kilgour and Hardy Amies for several years before going it alone to set up 1205.

Annemarie Schwarzenbach, the writer who inspired 1205 AW13 (twirlmart.tumblr.com)
 For her first womenswear collection, Paula read the collected articles of Swiss journalist Annemarie Schwarzenbach and then went on to create a wardrobe which would feasibly have been quite perfect as Annemarie travelled the world in the 30s reporting on wars and financial crises. It was also characters in the book,entitled De Monde en Monde but sadly not translated into English yet, whose lives play out in Paula's clothes, like the denim overalls of American factory workers which she has reimagined in cashmere. A quick glance at images of Schwarzenbach shows that she is probably exactly the kind of woman who would have loved to be able to buy from a label like 1205. "My philosophy is to make things people will buy and keep and add to, so nothing will ever jar" Gerbase explains, which pins down the way we want to dress now quite perfectly. 

Buy 1205 menswear at Harvey Nichols. Women's coming soon. 

A flash of red among the grey and navy at 1205 AW13

A 1205 blazer


Antonio Azzuolo SS13

Antonio Azzuolo SS13
Antonio Azzuolo likes to describe what he does as "non-gender" though in a way what he really does is make clothes for boys which girls also want. Antonio has an impressive menswear background, with stints at Hermes and Kenzo among his achievements. "My Dad was a tailor so really I've been learning forever" he says of his ingrained interest in creating clothes. In 2008, Antonio began to offer a custom-made service which has opened up his half-slick, half-street aesthetic to women. He was nominated for a CFDA award for his menswear last year but has now started to mix up his shows hiring both male and female models. Sadly, womenswear is still only available on a custom-made basis, contact sales@antonioazzuolo.com. Browse the menswear at The Corner, the bib shirt is pretty fabulous. 

Antonio Azzuolo AW13 at Paris Fashion Week


E Tautz shirt dress, £280, at Matches 
You'll probably know E. Tautz. Either because you've seen their modern take on Savile Row dressing or because you've watched their head designer, Patrick Grant, be a harsh but fair judge on The Great British Sewing Bee. As a girl, an E.Tautz show is always a little bit annoying, on a very personal and selfish level, because you really just want to see a women's version of the eye-popping colour combinations and twisted traditional looks for yourself. Thankfully, it seems that lots of people must have told them this, most likely including Patrick's girlfriend, the accessories designer Katie Hillier. The first range of E.Tautz women's shirts is in Matches now and there's more to come for Autumn, including shirts with fabulous paisley cuffs which mirror the main print in the menswear collection. If they don't convert you to androgynous fashion, who knows what will?

E. Tautz AW13 shirts

Monday, April 15, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

If you are anything like me then this is just the time of year when you are probably starting to get a bit infuriated. That's because now that the clocks have gone forward and there are some weak weather signs (e.g. not snowing) that summer may possibly be on its way, so it it's BIKINI BODY TIME!! This is when numerous interested parties are sure that we must be (and feel) such gallumping elephants beneath the layers of clothes we've been used to shrouding ourselves in for the previous six months that we must be determined to subsist on edamame beans for the next few months and suddenly enact some kind of crazed exercise routine just so that we can fly off to a foreign land and put on two small bits of bright coloured fabric.

We Own the Night, with Nike
That is not what you're reading about here. I just wanted to tell you about a positive, exciting and empowering exercise-related thing that it happening. Nike and Elle are hosting a 10km race, "We Own the Night" in London's Victoria Park on 18th May and it looks like it's going to be really fun. Like actual fun. It's difficult to describe running as fun. Yes, it's addictive and enjoyable when you feel fit and strong and make some unexpected or hard earned progress. If you're injured or tired then it's really miserable. The feeling of getting back from a really great, long run is almost euphoric and life-affirmingly satisfying. But it's quite rare that the entire experience from first step out of the door to final sprint could genuinely be described as proper fun. Until, that is, you add in the Nike factor which means it will be night time and that there will be music and lights. I've been on a Nike rave run before which so full of bright strobes and brilliant tunes that all the plodding boredom which can sometimes set in when you run completely disappeared and I felt like I was in some kind of mad film.

The best thing here is that there's no mention of that tedious bikini body stuff. It's all about being strong, fit, working out with your friends and wearing amazing Nike workout gear (if you want) in the process.  Running can be a lonely sport but Elle and Nike are hosting special training club events which you can go to in the run-up to the race for great motivation. I'm going to make sure I go to a few and will definitely report back.

You can enter the 10k here and find out more about where and when to train here. Oh, and if you need anything else to get you excited about the idea of running then I am currently reading Alexandra Heminsley's new book "Running Like A Girl". If you don't run already, then I'm pretty sure it will make you want to give it a shot, if you do then you will probably mostly cry/ nod/ laugh hysterically at how accurately she describes what it feels like to be a runner.

See you at the start line.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


We're on holiday for two weeks... See you soon.


Bethan and Melanie xx

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